Showing posts with label Puerto Rico. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Puerto Rico. Show all posts

November 6, 2019

Engineering Student at Purdue Refused By CVS to Get Meds Because He Had A PR License

A Purdue University engineering student said a CVS employee grilled him about his immigration status, even asking him for his visa, and denied over-the-counter cold medicines because his driver's license showed he was from Puerto Rico.

                     Image result for Purdue University engineering student,jose guzman

Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory and Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens by birth.
José Guzmán Payano, a junior at Purdue, went to his local CVS store to purchase some Mucinex on Oct. 25. While completing the self-checkout, the CVS employee approached him and asked him for his identification, at which point he provided her with his driver’s license, which was from Puerto Rico. According to Guzmán Payano, the employee repeatedly told him that the store could not accept his identification, then asked him for his visa.
“She said she needed a U.S.-issued ID, Canada or Mexico license. That's when I tell her that was a U.S. issued license, and I didn't need anything else but that license," Guzman Payano told WTHR, NBC News’ Indianapolis, Indiana, affiliate. “When she asked me for a visa, I was in shock at that time.”
Guzmán Payano said incidents like this have happened to him before, which is why he carries around his U.S. passport in his backpack. Yet, the CVS employee would not accept his passport — which showed he was born in Puerto Rico — as a valid form of ID either and instructed Payano that he needed to provide documentation that verified his immigration status.
Guzmán Payano said he left the store without the medicine and returned a few minutes later to see whether a shift supervisor or a manager could assist him, but was once again told he’d need a U.S.-issued ID. Upon leaving, he called CVS to file a complaint.
"I was a little nervous," Guzman Payano told WTHR. “I was shaken by what had happened.”
Though the incident occurred in late October, it gained momentum online after Guzmán Payano’s mother, Arlene Payano Burgos, wrote about it on her Facebook page.
“My son, or any other consumer, is not obligated to disclose his immigration status to any CVS employee! What caused this employee to ask him for his visa? Was it his accent? Was it his skin color? Was it the Puerto Rican flag on the license?,” Payano Burgos wrote in the post that as of Monday, had received more than 5,000 likes and more than 10,000 shares. “Whatever triggered her to discriminate against my son embodies exactly what is wrong in the United States of America today.” CVS has since apologized for the incident and clarified that the store does accept Puerto Rican IDs as valid forms of identification that can be used to purchase cold medicine.
“CVS Pharmacy is committed to ensuring that every customer receives courteous, outstanding service in our stores and we have apologized to our customer in West Lafayette and his mother following his recent experience in one of our stores,” Amy Thibault, senior manager of corporate communications at CVS, wrote in an emailed statement to NBC News. “While we are confident that this was an isolated incident, we will be reiterating to all of our stores the correct procedures to follow when requesting identification that is required by law for certain transactions, as well as the forms of identification we accept, including IDs issued by U.S. territories such as Puerto Rico.” 
However isolated the incident involving CVS may be, there have been other documented cases of U.S. businesses not accepting IDs issued in Puerto Rico. Last year, a Puerto Rican couple visiting California for their niece’s wedding said they were not able to check in to a Motel 6 because their IDs weren’t considered valid. 
Both incidents underscore misunderstandings surrounding Puerto Rico’s relationship with the United States. The U.S. took control of Puerto Rico after the Spanish-American War of 1898. In 1917, Puerto Ricans were given U.S. citizenship through an act of Congress.
Yet, a 2017 poll found that only 54 percent of Americans know that people born in Puerto Rico are U.S. citizens.
“I guess I should be thankful that he wasn’t thrown in the back of an ICE van and interrogated, or worse,” Payano Burgos wrote in her Facebook post, referring to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. “What happened to my son today is not unlike what many other families have had to face since Trump was sworn into office and it’s completely unacceptable.”
From NBC Latino 

October 31, 2019

There is A Path For Puerto Rico Statehood on a U.S. Bill Which Will Authorized A PR Election

Image result for puerto rico as state 51


The question of statehood for Puerto Rico would be put to voters of the U.S. commonwealth for the third time since 2012 under legislation introduced in Congress on Tuesday.  Proponents of the bill said it would provide the island with the same path to statehood taken by Alaska and Hawaii, the last two states admitted to the union. 
Under the legislation, which has some bipartisan support, a federally authorized referendum would appear on the Nov. 3, 2020, ballot in Puerto Rico. Approval by a majority of the island’s voters would lead to a presidential proclamation within 30 months making Puerto Rico the 51st state. 
President Donald Trump has called Puerto Rico “one of the most corrupt places on earth,” making the bill’s future murky. The island’s non-voting congressional representative, Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon, said the measure has 45 sponsors.  The island is still trying to recover from devastating hurricanes that hit in 2017, while it works its way through a bankruptcy process to restructure about $120 billion of debt and pension obligations. 
Gonzalez-Colon said the bill provides political equality for Puerto Rico. 
“The American citizens of Puerto Rico will have the opportunity to participate in a federally-sponsored vote and be asked the following question: ‘Should Puerto Rico be admitted as a State of the Union, yes or no?’” she said in a statement.  “This is similar to what happened in Alaska and Hawaii, which is what ultimately makes this legislation different.” 
In a non-binding 2017 referendum here 97% of the island's voters favored statehood, although turnout was just 23% due to a boycott against the vote. 
In a 2012 vote, 61% of Puerto Ricans favored statehood over other alternatives. Neither result moved Congress to act on statehood. 
Puerto Rico, which has been governed by the United States since 1899, has suffered the effects of unequal treatment under federal law compared with U.S. states, hindering the island’s development and economy, according to the bill. 
Reporting by Karen Pierog in Chicago; Editing by Matthew Lewis

October 24, 2019

Cubans in Miami Had Castro, Puerto Ricans Have Maria, They Want to Follow The Same Recipe


{By Luisita Lopez Torregrosa}


Puerto Ricans in this city, who have long felt like a sideshow in Florida politics, are mobilizing to gain a larger voice at the ballot box, motivated in part by the devastation and the response to Hurricane Maria, which “showed our powerlessness," as one attorney and activist says.
“Puerto Ricans are galvanized and unified for the first time,” says Natascha Otero-Santiago, a publicist and community activist, referring to the aftermath of Hurricane Maria and the drive for political empowerment. “I’ve never seen anything like it here in my 25 years in Miami.”
Otero-Santiago points to the “summer revolution,” the popular uprising that drove Puerto Rico’s then-Gov. Ricardo A. Rosselló from office. “It brought us all together, Puerto Ricans on the island and Puerto Ricans here in solidarity and gave us the incentive and energy to raise our voice.”
Some longtime residents and activists see an opening as the parties, especially Democratic presidential candidates, see the growing potential of Puerto Rican voters ahead of 2020.
Democratic presidential candidates are showing up in the state with an eye on its 29 electoral votes and the key to victory are the state’s 3 million eligible Latino voters. Puerto Ricans, the fastest-growing Latino group in the state with 1.2 million people, command one-third of that vote, about the same as Cuban-American voters.
Former Vice President Joe Biden, who had been here for the first debate in July and for private fundraisers, recently timed his first public rally in Miami to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D- Mass., visited San Juan early in her campaign and unrolled a debt-relief plan to stabilize the island. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., enlisted the mayor of San Juan, Carmen Yulin Cruz, as one of his campaign managers. South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg recently held a grassroots rally and a private gathering with Puerto Ricans in Orlando and has expressed support for statehood. Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, the only Latino presidential candidate, made Puerto Rico the first stop in his campaign.
While candidates court prospective voters, Otero-Santiago and other political organizers and activists say voting is just part of it.
“We must elect more Puerto Ricans to local and state offices and Congress,” she says. The 27-member Florida congressional delegation has one Puerto Rican member, Rep. Darren Soto, a Democrat from Central Florida, which is home to a substantial and growing Puerto Rican population.
Only three Puerto Ricans hold seats in the state Legislature and there's only one Puerto Rican mayor, Joel Flores, of Greenacres in Palm Beach County.

Growing numbers, but voters?

The number of island-born, eligible Puerto Rican voters in Florida has increased 30 percent since 2016, according to Pew Research. But that doesn't immediately translate to votes. During the recent midterm cycle, the four Florida counties with the largest Puerto Rican populations had slower Latino voter registration growth, and Puerto Ricans lagged behind other voters in the midterms.
Frederick Vélez III, 29, a Puerto Rican activist who got his start in politics as a scheduler for Rep. José Serrano, D-N.Y., came to Miami last summer after working to get out the vote in Orlando. He said that among some of the approximately 50,000 to 70,000 Puerto Ricans who have settled in Florida in the two years since Maria, there is still a lack of familiarity with mainland and state politics, and some speak little English.
“On the island, they vote every four years, no midterms, no school board, and city council elections," Vélez said, adding that voting on the island is a holiday and turnout can be as high as 80 percent. "Here, they don’t vote up to their numbers," and activities such as fundraising or getting involved in local campaigns have not been part of their past experience.
Advocacy organizations such as the Hispanic Federation and the Alianza for Progress have been mobilizing to reach out to prospective voters. On Oct. 16 in Orlando, the Hispanic Federation launched Que Vote Mi Gente, a voter registration drive aimed at the Puerto Rican community.
The kickoff included Broadway star and "Hamilton" creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, whose father Luis Miranda founded Hispanic Federation, as well as salsa singer Frankie Negrón. The organization is planning a full-blown campaign deploying social media, television advertising, and get-out-the-vote rallies, according to Otero-Santiago, a member of the Hispanic Federation.  

Appealing to Puerto Rican voters means focusing on issues that are specific to their community. Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens, so while immigration is not a priority, the question of Puerto Rico's reconstruction and financial recovery, as well as the prospect of statehood are key issues.
For the GOP, Florida is fertile ground. President Donald Trump won the state by 112,000 votes in 2016 and has the support of the state’s two Republican U.S. senators, Sen. Marco Rubio and Sen. Rick Scott, as well as Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and dozens of state and local officials.
In targeting Latino voters, Republican organizers and officials are sticking closely to the president's playbook, slamming Democrats and their policies as socialist and talking up the economy.
“President Trump values the Hispanic community and the strong Latino support for him and his policies will be instrumental to his re-election in 2020,’’ Danielle Alvarez, a Trump campaign spokeswoman, says. So far in this cycle, according to the campaign, GOP volunteers and organizers participated in Puerto Rican faith fairs and festivals; promoted anti-abortion and other conservative social issues that appeal to evangelical Puerto Ricans and launched Latinos for Trump in Miami, where the president lost in 2016.
Democratic presidential candidates are countering the GOP message, attacking the president's record regarding island issues.
"Vice President Biden is absolutely making a concerted effort with the Puerto Rican community,” Isabel Aldunate, Biden’s Hispanic media press secretary, says. She pointed at a Biden campaign video lambasting Trump’s careless handling of Puerto Rico after and since Maria. The campaign recently hired Laura Jimenez, a Floridian with experience in the Puerto Rican community as its national Latino vote director.

Warren named Kimberly Diaz Scott, a Latina, as state campaign director, the first such appointment by a Democratic presidential candidate in this cycle.
Democratic organizers concede that amid conflicting goals, groups and fundraising issues, prospective voters are responding to the attention with varying degrees of enthusiasm.
“Puerto Ricans who relocated after Maria and the economic collapse on the island are tired of politics and polarized,” Nicole Rodriguez, 42, president of the Democratic Hispanic Caucus of Miami-Dade, says explaining why some are disengaged. "They have soured on politics on the island, on the corruption and the bad economy and come here to get away from that and want nothing to do with politics here.”
But Rodriguez is optimistic. “The numbers are there. The issues are simple. We need to make more noise.”
Republican political strategist and commentator Rick Wilson, who's fiercely critical of Pres. Trump, says that when it comes to Puerto Rican voters, Democrats need to learn a lesson from Republican Sen. Rick Scott's victory in November.
"He won a surprising amount of the Puerto Rican vote by going out to them, spending millions of dollars and to his credit, going repeatedly to Puerto Rico," said Wilson, adding it would be "political malpractice" if Democrats don't have hundreds on the ground registering Puerto Rican voters. "They lose it because they get outhustled."

Will they gain clout?

Cuban and Puerto Rican comparisons are inevitable in South Florida. Puerto Rico’s political power here reached its peak in 1973 when Maurice A. Ferre, a member of a prominent Puerto Rican family, became the city’s first Hispanic and the first Puerto Rican mayor in the United States. But after his twelve years in office, it was the city's growing Cuban American population which become a powerful political voice in the city and the state.
“Cubans always had a North star, Cuba, Castro,” explains Francisco J. Cerezo, 49, an advocate for Puerto Rican issues and a law partner at DLA Piper, who studied law and worked in New York City until moving to Miami 20 years ago. “That unified them gave them a common purpose ... We did not have a North star until recently. Our North star may well be Maria.”
“The hurricane tore apart our illusions,’’ he says, looking over Biscayne Bay from his 25th-floor office downtown. “It showed our weaknesses, our powerlessness. It affected the rich and poor. It brought Puerto Ricans together on the island and on the mainland. It may be the closest thing we’ll have to a North star. It may be our rallying cry.”
It was for Gabriela De Jesús, 28, a Florida International University master’s candidate who is running for a Democratic seat in the state Legislature. “The treatment Puerto Ricans received after Hurricane Maria infuriated me,” she says.
De Jesús, who prefers to be called Gaby, was born in Puerto Rico and grew up partly in the Dominican Republic (her father is Puerto Rican, her mother Dominican). When she was 25, she endured a yearlong illness that forced her to give up a small catering business but inspired her to run for office.
“She’s a force of nature!” Otero-Santiago says, watching Gaby speak to a crowd of supporters gathered in a South American restaurant in a shopping mall near downtown. The youngest and the first Puerto Rican woman to run for office in South Florida, she couches progressive ideas in moderate terms, emphasizing human capital and the need to fight racism and culture shock that she says many Latinos feel in this country.
Days later, over coffee at Joe’s Take Away in South Beach, De Jesús recalls her early years in the U.S. “I was shocked, unable to speak and relate when I arrived at Manhattan College in the Bronx. It was all so different and I didn’t speak good English and felt lost.”
About newly arrived Puerto Ricans, she says, “they are suddenly here and they don’t speak English well and they don’t vote because they don’t know the system and they are afraid. I know what that feels like.”
Apart from De Jesús, there are two other Miami Puerto Ricans running in local races: Eleazar Meléndez, running for a district seat in the City Commission, and former state Rep. Robert Asencio, who's running for a Miami-Dade County Commission seat.
For her part, De Jesús is officially kicking off her campaign this month, with Frederick Vélez as her manager. She talks about the need for transparency and unity, about a broken system. In doing so, she's hoping to win a voice for Puerto Ricans in the state — and perhaps a boost to her party.

NBC News

October 10, 2019

Supreme Court To Decide If Puerto Rico Can Still Govern Itself


Mr. Bowie is an assistant professor at Harvard Law School.

In 1947, Congress passed and President Harry Truman signed a law giving the people of Puerto Rico the right to elect their own governor. Until then, all territories of the United States, including Puerto Rico, had been governed by men appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. Most governors had been known more for their relationships to the president than, say, for their ability to speak Spanish. But after that 1947 law, Puerto Rican voters elected Luis Muñoz Marín to begin what would become a transformative governorship.

Even as more recent governors have resigned in disgrace, democratic self-government in Puerto Rico has remained. But that could change. Next week, the Supreme Court is scheduled to consider a case that could radically undermine the ability of over four million American citizens — in Puerto Rico, other territories and even the District of Columbia — to elect their own chief executives.

The court is being asked to decide whether a constitutional provision that ordinarily limits Congress applies when Congress legislates for a territory. That provision, the appointments clause, requires all “officers of the United States” to be appointed by a specified procedure, typically by the president with Senate confirmation. Because of this clause, it would be unconstitutional for Congress to allow voters to elect the attorney general or secretary of state; those officers must be appointed and confirmed. But on the assumption that the appointments clause doesn’t apply to territories or the District of Columbia, Congress allowed for the election of Puerto Rico’s governor in 1947 and the district’s mayor in 1973.

Congress’s grant of self-determination was, paradoxically, justified by a series of Supreme Court decisions that were grounded in imperialism and white supremacy. Those decisions held that constitutional provisions that normally limit Congress’s powers don’t apply in the capital district or territories. But over the years, those rulings also led to laws that have allowed for the dignity of self-rule in those places. 

In 1820, for example, the court held that the needs of “the American empire” allowed Congress to tax district and territorial residents without also giving them voting representatives in Congress. “Representation is not made the foundation of taxation,” Chief Justice John Marshall explained without irony, despite having fought in a revolution premised on that issue.

And in the infamous Insular Cases of the early 20th century, the court allowed Congress to disregard the Bill of Rights when legislating for the territories of Puerto Rico and the Philippines. The court maintained that “the uncivilized parts” of those territories “were wholly unfitted to exercise” these rights, and Congress needed the discretion to decide when the islanders were ready.

But the one silver lining of Congress’s relatively unrestricted discretion to act in the District of Columbia and territories has been that Congress has had the same unrestricted discretion to establish democratic governments there.

For example, the Constitution normally prohibits Congress from delegating its lawmaking powers to a local government. Congress couldn’t allow the Cleveland City Council to enact new federal laws. But the Supreme Court has held that this “nondelegation doctrine” doesn’t apply in the territories or the District of Columbia. Accordingly, Congress approved a constitution for Puerto Rico in 1952 and home rule for the capital district in 1973, delegating to both local governments the power to pass laws for which Congress otherwise would be responsible.

Nevertheless, Congress hasn’t always been consistent about respecting this home rule — as next week’s Supreme Court case illustrates. 

The case will review a 2016 law known as PROMESA, in which Congress created an unelected oversight board to restructure Puerto Rico’s multibillion-dollar debt. Describing the board as an agency of the Puerto Rican government, Congress even gave it the power to revise the territory’s laws. This return to colonial supervision angered not only many Puerto Ricans, but also some creditors. The creditors went to court, asserting that the board’s members were appointed in violation of the appointments clause.

A Federal District Court judge rejected the creditors’ argument on the ground that the appointments clause doesn’t apply in the territories. But in February, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit reversed that ruling, holding that Congress is bound by the appointments clause everywhere.

The First Circuit considered the unwelcome possibility that if the appointments clause applies to Puerto Rico, it might also require the appointment, not election, of Puerto Rico’s governor or the District of Columbia’s mayor. But it distinguished these officers on the ground that the appointments clause applies only to “officers of the United States.” The court maintained that the governor of Puerto Rico, by contrast, is an officer “of the territory,” suggesting that her authority comes from the Puerto Rican constitution and not federal law.

But only three years ago, in another case involving Puerto Rico, the Supreme Court emphasized that the Puerto Rican Constitution is United States law: Congress approved that Constitution and can amend it, which Congress effectively did with PROMESA. Territorial officers thus are officers of the United States in the same way that William Barr, as attorney general, is both an officer of the Department of Justice and of the United States.

Moreover, the First Circuit’s distinction between territorial law and the United States law wouldn’t save the Washington mayor, whose authority undoubtedly comes from federal law. So if the Supreme Court upholds the First Circuit’s application of the appointments clause to Puerto Rico without offering a new explanation of why the clause shouldn’t also apply to its governor, it could doom territorial — and district — home rule.

The court could, of course, overturn its noxious territorial precedent, giving district and territorial residents the same constitutional rights as other Americans to representation in Congress and everything else. Failing this wholesale revision, the court should explicitly preserve Congress’s power to create the conditions for local self-government in the territories and the District of Columbia. Otherwise, in the name of freeing Puerto Rico from unconstitutional oversight by an unelected board, the court might make Washington and the territories even more constitutionally anomalous and less democratic than they are now.

The promise of 1947 would, decades later, be broken.

Nikolas Bowie is an assistant professor at Harvard Law School, where he teaches constitutional and local government law.

September 1, 2019

ACLU Brings Suit to The Supreme Ct.To Erase(Trump)Racist Second Class Precedent For PR

 Puerto Rico* never asked to be part of the United States and never asked for Citizenship for its inhabitants. But Puerto Rico was a price of war with Spain who no longer had the Armada it once had. Spain decided to have the United States keep Puerto Rico as a price of war. For the United States, it fell right into the plan to control all the islands and nations around them.  As the US Navy grew and the States became more involved in world affairs now that British, France and the Spaniards had other problems at hand other than conquering. Conquering was left to the United States. From Mexico, Panama, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and the American Virgin Islands. There it was an Island named Borinkén with its semi-tropical weather, its own bank, an economy based on agriculture;  Also friendly natives with its Spaniard educated white population mixed with the Indians (mostly Tahinos)which were the original inhabitants and then it had slaves brought in from Spain to help to work the land.  They also had plenty of sugar, coffee and cheap labor for the still-growing nation of the US. For the Puerto Ricans in the Island whether white, brown or black now a new proposition (in the form of law) to become full US Citizens thanks to WW1. The US needed as many men as they could get. In Puerto Rico, they had men they could make fighters except they could not fight, will not fight and die for a nation that took them over. The answer was to make them citizens. As citizens, they could not refuse to fight. The island would not be incorporated but the US will give the Borinqueños a promise to have the unincorporated island as semi-independent with its own constitution and with elections offering, Commonwealth, Statehood or independence. But having the Federal laws and currency toping the El Banco de PR. So there it is how Puerto Rico was brought in to the United States and how their citizens became citizens except they could not vote in federal elections if they were on the Island. Citizenship only brought Puerto Rican blood to be spilled for a reason they did not know nor understood and widows and kids which will now be without a breadwinner. My father at 18 was one of those soldiers drafted to fight but he had *spurs on his feet and was sent home. (*spurs= He had an asthma attack for which he was hospitalized but at least he was now a veteran).
Adam Gonzalez
Adamfoxie blog Int.

The Supreme Court has overruled racist precedents that allowed for segregated accommodations for blacks and whites and permitted the internment of Japanese-Americans during wartime.
Now, the court must overturn a precedent on the books that grants residents of Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories second-class status under the Constitution, the American Civil Liberties Union told the justices in a friend-of-the-court brief submitted this week.

The precedent the ACLU is seeking to overturn was established in a series of early 20th century disputes known as the “Insular Cases.”The court held in those cases, decided between 1901 and 1922, that U.S. citizens living in so-called “unincorporated territories” were not entitled to the same constitutional protections as other Americans. The territories are home to about 4 million people, the vast majority of whom live in Puerto Rico.

That doctrine, the civil rights group said, is “no less offensive” than the one established by the 1896 “separate but equal” decision in Plessy v. Ferguson, which was not overturned until Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka was handed down by a unanimous court in 1954.

The ACLU’s brief is scathing. Adriel Cepeda Derieux, an attorney for the group, wrote that the cases are a “glaring anomaly in the fabric of our constitutional law” that “explicitly rest on anachronistic and deeply offensive racial-cultural assumptions.”To this day, he wrote, the doctrine “casts a pall on the rights of residents of Puerto Rico, including more than three million U.S. citizens, and close to 500,000 more in other so-called ‘unincorporated territories.’”

The brief came in connection with a case over the constitutionality of the financial oversight board established for Puerto Rico by Congress in 2016, in the midst of a financial crisis on the island. The federal appeals court in Boston held that appointments to the board were inconsistent with the Appointments Clause of the Constitution, but the board is asking the top court to reverse the decision on the grounds that the clause does not apply.

The brief was filed on Thursday, as President Donald Trump was criticizing Puerto Rico for being in the path of a tropical storm accusing the island’s leadership of incompetence and corruption.Cepeda Derieux wrote that the ACLU takes no position on the broader merits of the case — or, tangentially, on the issue of Puerto Rican statehood — but urged the justices to use the case as a vehicle to scrap the Insular Cases once and for all.  

Cepeda Derieux wrote that the ACLU takes no position on the broader merits of the case — or, tangentially, on the issue of Puerto Rican statehood — but urged the justices to use the case as a vehicle to scrap the Insular Cases once and for all

“It is very difficult to rely on these cases on the face of them, because of how glaringly and unabashedly racist their reasoning is,” Cepeda Derieux said in an interview. “Not only do the Insular Cases say nothing about the Appointments Clause, but to look to them here is to give them exactly the sort of expansion that the court has warned against.”

Starting in the 1950s, the top court began walking back the doctrine. In the 1957 case Reid v. Covert, the justices held that its reasoning should not go beyond the specific constitutional provisions that were addressed in the cases themselves, namely matters involving taxation and certain Fifth and Sixth Amendment rights, including jury trials.
But lower courts have applied the reasoning beyond those areas. In 2016, the federal court in Puerto Rico ruled that same-sex marriage, upheld the year before by the Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges, had not been incorporated on the island.

 The 1st Circuit later reversed the decision.
In a 1999 case, a federal court cited the Insular Cases to decide that the principle of “one person, one vote” was not a fundamental right of residents on the Northern Mariana Islands.

“Since it is clear that the ‘one man, one vote’ principle is not a right that is the ‘basis of all free government,’ it need not be applied in and to an unincorporated territory such as the Commonwealth,” District Judge Alex Munson wrote.

“Lower courts have wrestled with these cases,” Cepeda Derieux said, “and because these cases have a shorthand framework where it says that fundamental rights are the only rights that apply in the territories, that is a framework that lower courts have looked to and used in contexts where it shouldn’t apply and have used as a lens to apply the entire Constitution throughout the territories.”

The Supreme Court only rarely overturns its own precedents, generally abiding by a principle known as “stare decisis,” which puts a high bar on reversing decisions it has made in the past. Between 2010 and 2018, fewer than 10 decisions on matters of constitutional law were reversed, according to a government report.

Sometimes it takes a long time for decisions to be overruled, even if they are despised. Korematsu v. the United States, the 1944 decision that upheld the internment of Japanese-Americans during the Second World War, was only overturned last year, in Trump v. Hawaii, the decision that allowed for Trump’s travel ban to take effect.

“Korematsu was gravely wrong the day it was decided, has been overruled in the court of history, and — to be clear — ‘has no place in law under the Constitution,’” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the opinion.

The Puerto Rico dispute is set to be argued in October, and a decision is expected by June 2020.

* This is a condensed Puerto Rican history and does not mean to present the skeleton without the meat of a lot of details such as dates in the total history. I tried to present those facts with honesty in the order in which they occurred. The facts come from history taught to me in the Seminary (it was in Spanish) and facts I learn on my own studying with material available for the island. Borinquén was the name of Puerto Rico until the Spanish decided to change the name to what they saw it was, a Rich port which is what the name means. Borinquén came to celebrate the founders of Puerto Rico, which were Indians, not Columbus and not Viva paper Towels are given to Puerto Ricans in their time of need by a psychopath who knows nothing of all the thousands of lives this race has lost to all the wars the mainland is gotten involved with. But then a Psychopath might not be interested in history and not know.
Adam Gonzalez, Publisher

July 26, 2019

PR Gov. Resigned But Knowing The PR Is A Colony With Criminal President Who Hates it, They are Not his Color, Where Does PR Goes From Here?

The below story is from Issac Chotiner and originally posted at  The New Yorker. What I printed here is just part of the whole story and invite you to read it. Whether you do or not I appreciate you reading what I posted here. Puerto Rico is a case of the United States imperialism who through lies is been kept the secret with the promised that Puerto Ricans were to change their future and they could choose the present status or opt for independence or statehood. These are all lies and hurricane Maria and criminal Trump showed the Emperor was walking around Washington DC without any clothes. The truth is that PR has been a badly kept colony and is gotten to the point in which people now know what they didn't before. Puerto Ricans are peaceful, happy people in general and if they could take the long road but in peace, they will not go for the short cut.

When a deal was made with Puerto Rico's first Governor,  Martín Muñoz Marín and the Eisenhower administration and the Congress of 1957, nowhere was it written or told that Puerto Rico was to remain a colony forever. The first Governor said "This is the first step and in no way it means is permanent. This will give our people the opportunity to put their foot on the ground. Puerto Rico was no longer an agriculture exporting island but now it was being converted with the help of the federal government a factory island exporting pharmaceutical and int heir words supplying Puerto Rico with a way of earning a decent income. My father had acres of land cultivating sure canes and on the season all these men came looking for work and he will hire 10-20 men and a truck or two to have these canes cut load up the truck and take it to the "Central" or sugar mill to be converted into sugar.
My dads land went nowhere but the dismantled all the sugar mills and that was it for the sugar production in Puerto Rico. Dad sold all his acres, originally had 17 and bought a house with a backyard I came to use the toilet in my own house for the first time in my life. No one had to go with me to the latrine because I was horrified of it. The toilet was inside the house. Oh wao what luxury!
The point here is what the government did. It destroyed the agriculture of this rich island to converted into something that only the government in Washington could control at the price it dictated.

I don't wish to go into the economics of the Island but to stay within the politics of the Island because this provides the roadmap to take. Puerto Ricans are being put against the wall but Puerto Rico won't be the only state in which the US went in and then abandoned it. Yes, there is Irak and the US obtained PR the same way. Puerto Rico was taken from Spain or given by Spain as a price of war. The point is the US took it and made it it's own.  Too far from Spain and a with the kingdom that was on a diet and getting smaller all the time. Not all the Puerto Ricans accepted this and therefore there were a lot of killings from soldiers and cops shooting on Puerto Ricans. There was a couple of rebellions the best-known one is called "El Grito de Lares" in which the "Jibaros" from the mountains, the ones that nobody thought even knew what was going on came down to take over the government. My brother on my father's side and I being a small boy, many years later will say to all of us while we listen to his stories in the Army. He was in Korea and he was brought down to one of the Army Units (Roosevelt Camp). He said the President ordered the Army and the Puerto Rico national Guard to shoot to kill the rebels. He said by the Time he got to Lares in a truck  everything was over except the bodies were littering the town streets and roads. There was no place that bodies were not thrown all about. As a result, he almost lost his mind. He was never was the same. Even though he was a good decent man the baby of my dad and his first wife who was raised by my mom after she married my dad. He was now short tempered and sometimes he said things that people would say he most be crazy. The story about El grito de Lares was not made up because it was well documented then and there were plenty of witnesses and there is plenty of writting about this period of the Puerto Rican life as a property of the US, something we criticize others of doing. Isn't that what China wants of Taiwan and we have even signed a treaty to defend them against China. They deserve liberty and to choose their future. Taiwan can but Puerto Rico cannot. I touched on Irak as we took over them and their government and then abandoned them. That is what a criminal president said he would do and so is keeping his promise. You see the government being corrupt, not all are but when people don't have anything to put their trust own they go for themselves. The worse stealing were people that Trump recommended to Ricky. Imagine the person in charge of education was not even a Puerto Rican. She started doing what they did with agriculture, Closing the schools. Eliminating. More dependence and only for people with money.

Puerto Rico’s governor, Ricardo Rosselló, resigned on Wednesday night after a profane group chat between Roselló and his top aides was leaked to the press, launching a crisis that left the island’s politics in a state of suspension. The group’s members joked about the deaths of more than three thousand Puerto Ricans in Hurricane Maria, in the fall of 2017 (“Don’t we have some cadavers to feed our crows?”), made misogynistic and homophobic remarks, and insulted their political adversaries. In recent days, two members of Roselló’s government also announced their resignations and the F.B.I. arrested two former cabinet officials for corruption; right now, Wanda Vázquez, the Secretary of Justice, is his most likely replacement.

The scandal is a recent one, but the roots of discontent go back much longer. Puerto Ricans have long chafed at the island’s poor governance and commonwealth status. Their concerns, though, became acute during the debt crisis of 2016, which led former President Barack Obama to appoint a federal board to oversee Puerto Rico’s finances, and after Hurricane Maria, which was catastrophically mismanaged by the Trump Administration. The combination of a decade-long recession, an enormous debt burden, austerity measures imposed by the federal board, and an American President with contempt for the island has prompted many Puerto Ricans to contend that they are neither free to govern their own affairs nor granted the respect and dignity of other Americans.
Rosselló’s decision to step down was met with widespread jubilation. But where does Puerto Rico go from here? To talk about this question, I spoke by phone with Yarimar Bonilla, a professor of Puerto Rican studies and anthropology at Hunter College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and the co-editor of the forthcoming anthology “Aftershocks of Disaster: Puerto Rico Before and After the Storm.” She is in Puerto Rico conducting research on the hurricane-recovery effort and has recently been interviewing protesters. During our conversation, which has been edited for length and clarity, we also discussed what has changed in Puerto Rican attitudes during the past several years, the ideological component of the protests, and why the question of sovereignty has been temporarily sidelined.

How much do you view this resignation as a direct result of the chat group leaking, and how much was this about long-festering anger, to the degree that the two can be separated?
I think the chat was the catalyst, and I think, within the context of the chat, a big part of it was corruption, but I think a big part of it was also mocking the dead of [Hurricane] Maria. It is visible in the placards and signs everyone is carrying. The fact that they mocked the dead was really something people could not tolerate after what they had gone through after Maria.

How much was Rosselló a symbol of a discredited élite? Was it important that his father was the governor, too?

I think so, because he represented a political dynasty and old-school politics, in a way, and those who have held onto power. It is important to note that this is a movement led very much by young people, and, for them, he represents the kind of voting processes that their parents engaged in. And for a long time, people here have been saying, “We need to vote differently, we need to vote intelligently.” A lot of the young people that I am talking to say they are not going to vote the way their parents or grandparents did. They also want to get rid of the political class in general, and the political party system.
To what degree have these protests had an ideological character, beyond a rebellion against the system?

Isaac Chotiner is a staff writer at The New Yorker, where he is the principal contributor to Q. & A., a series of timely interviews with major public figures in politics, media, books, business, technology, and more.

July 23, 2019

The Largest Protest on The Island’s History} "Ricky if You Ever Cared? Resign NoW!” {adamfoxie}

In one of the largest protests in the island's history, thousands of Puerto Ricans have flooded the streets in recent days to protest against Gov. Ricardo Rosselló.
Rosselló has been deep in controversy after a leak of hundreds of pages of texts showed the governor writing messages to male members of his administration that contained misogynistic and homophobic language.
President Donald Trump along with many others have called on Rosselló to step down. The politician, the son of a former governor, has refused but said he won't seek re-election in 2020.
Despite surviving other controversies around government corruption and recovery efforts from Hurricane Maria, "Chatgate" has proved more difficult for Rosselló. 
Why people of Puerto Rico are angry: Here is what's fueling the major protests
Here are seven photos that show how massive the protest really are:

Contributing: Susan Miller and John Bacon. Follow USA TODAY's Ryan Miller on Twitter @RyanW_Miller

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